15 June 2013

15th June - The White Stripes' Icky Thump

Artist – Album: The White Stripes – Icky Thump
Released:  15th June 2007

Sounds Like: They’ve gone mental!

Things kick off on Icky Thump, The White Stripes’ sixth and final studio album, with the band not straying too far away from their standard stuff. The Led Zeppelin influences are on full display on the title track, whilst the bluesy garage rock of ‘300 M.P.H Torrential Outpour Blues’ has the vibe of their earlier work but with a slightly more polished feel.
On the fourth song though, things take a turn for the weird. Jack White wails “Connnn-quest!” like a psychotic matador, whilst mariachi trumpeters and flamenco guitars provide a suitably theatrical and exciting backdrop. It’s by far the most enthralling, interesting and, well, insane song on this album, and it’s only once you look at the album’s writing credits that you realise that this centrepiece is not a White Stripes song at all, but a near like-for-like copy of Patti Page’s 1950s dramatic pop. You barely have time to get your breath back during the pleasant but hardly ground breaking ‘Bone Broke’ and ‘Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn’ before you’re thrown back into the crazy with ‘St. Andrew (This Battle Is in the Wind’ ), a psychedelic  rocker complete with bagpipes and spoken word verses. Following that is the abrasive and harsh ‘Little Cream Soda’.
Whilst these flights of fancy can be fascinating and original, they’re mostly just baffling. There’s also the inkling that they’re only doing this for the sake of being weird – check out the pearly king and queen outfits on the album cover for exhibit 1, totally unnecessary. Not only do the bizarre bits swing and miss, but when the band decide to go back to basics and rock out they can still occasionally disappoint. Unfortunately, for the first time they sound like they’re no longer making classic rock but just imitating Classic Rock. It’s a decent album, but nowhere near as vital as their earlier output.

Albumaday... rating: 6/10

1.       Icky Thump – 4:17
2.       You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do as You’re Told) – 3:54
3.       300 M.P.H. Torrential Outpour Blues – 5:28
4.       Conquest – 2:48
5.       Bone Broke – 3:14
6.       Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn – 3:05
7.       St. Andrew (This Battle Is in the Air) – 1:49
8.       Little Cream Soda – 3:45
9.       Rag and Bone – 3:48
10.   I’m Slowly Turning Into You – 4:34
11.   A Martyr for My Love for You – 4:19
12.   Catch Hell Blues – 4:18
13.   Effect and Cause – 3:00

Listen to ‘Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X69EVJCOKWM

Also released on the 15th June:
1989: Nirvana - Bleach
Also released on the 15th June:
1999: The White Stripes – The White Stripes

Also released on the 15th June:
1999: Santana - Supernatural

No comments:

Post a Comment